Juvenile Diversion: Programs for Justice-Involved Youth with Mental Health Disorders explores the results of a 2003 survey by the National Center for Mental Health and Juvenile Justice designed to identify the state of juvenile diversion in the United States. At the time of conduction, this survey served as the most comprehensive attempt to date to identify and describe existing juvenile diversion programs, particularly those that focus on youth with mental illness and laid the groundwork for the further examination of key diversion models and approaches for youth.

There is growing pressure on the juvenile justice system to respond more appropriately to the mental health needs of youth. For many of these youth, diversion to community-based services is a much-preferred strategy that results in better outcomes for the youth without sacrificing public safety. Yet, up until now, there has been virtually no information in the research or knowledge bases about effective juvenile diversion programs and strategies for youth in general, and even less information about diversion programs specifically designed for youth with mental health needs. This survey represents a first attempt to identify existing diversion models and lays the groundwork for the further study of key strategies, approaches, and models for effectively diverting youth with mental health needs into community-based treatment.

The National Center for Youth Opportunity and Justice (NCYOJ) originally developed and maintained this resource. The NCYOJ was operated by Policy Research, Inc. and operated from 2001 to 2022 and was formerly known as the National Center for Mental Health and Juvenile Justice. The NCYOJ improved life opportunities for youth through systems and practice improvement initiatives.

This resource should be viewed as a reference document. It has not been updated since its publication. In addition, this document has not been made 508 compliant. If you would like a 508 compliant version of this document, please email communications@prainc.com.

This resource was first shared in 2006.

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